can pigs eat dog food

Can Pigs Eat Dog Food?

Due to the fact pigs are great eaters, some pig owners are tempted to serve their pig dog food, knowing that they will eat it, but is it safe?

Can pigs eat dog food?

Yes, pigs can eat dog food, but it is not safe. Due to the high protein composition of such a diet, it may be harmful to the pigs, including potbellied pigs. Pigs should be served dog food only in emergencies where there is no other food to feed the pigs when hungry.

Let’s get deeper into evaluating whether pigs can eat dog food.

Various types of dog food

Is Dog Food Safe For Pigs?

Dog food is designed for dogs; it is safe for animals, especially mammals. The fact that the food is safe does not make it fit to be consumed by pigs.

Also, because it is called dog food, it means the nutrients are designed to suit the nutritional level of the dog. And the dog, apart from being a mammal from the pigs, has a different functional system, hence their nutritional needs.

However, you can serve them dog food in an emergency to relieve your pigs’ hunger.

Can Pet Pigs Eat Dog food?

The same principle applies to your pet pigs. A one-time feeding of your pet pig with dog food may not be harmful, but doing so continuously may cause serious health issues for the pigs.

The rule of thumb states that it gives dog food to a dog and never allows your pet pigs to take it in large amounts. It would help if you served your pet pigs general food rather than food designed for a specific animal.

Is Dog Food Safe For Potbelly Pigs?

Although different from hogs, Potbelly pigs still do not make dog food fit for them. Avoid giving potbelly pigs dog food; it should be done only in emergencies.

What Happens if a Pig Eats Dog food?

A few portions of dog food will not necessarily cause any harm, but turning it into a regular diet for the pigs can lead to severe deficiencies and health issues, like vomiting, stomach pains, and restlessness.

You are only permitted to give pig dogs food when there is no other food and the pigs are starving. After that, you should immediately discontinue it and feed them with the right food afterward.

pigs eating solid food

Is Dog Food Fit For Pig’s Growth?

As the name implies, dog food is solely designed to meet the dog’s nutritional needs, not any other animal. This dog food does not contain the nutrient needed for the pig’s growth. It does not serve the pig’s needs.

Also, one way to increase the pigs’ appetite is to serve them wet food. Ensure your mix the grains with water if you want the pigs to eat more.

One major tip for feeding the pig is to soften the food to make it easier to swallow. And ensure you mix it up with protein-rich food, as regular consumption of a complete diet will boost their growth.

How Often Can You Feed Your Pigs With Dog Food?

You are only permitted to feed your pigs with dog food for a short time, and after that, you discontinue immediately.

Even though it does not cause any harm, regular dog food consumption won’t do them any good. It would be best to try out other diets like forage is an excellent diet for pigs. As you know, pigs are great eaters; you can even serve them rice or grain in the kitchen, which will do more good than the pig’s food.

What Food Are Harmful To pigs?

Even though pigs are not picky in terms of diet, you cannot serve them anything you come across. For no reason should you serve your pigs with the following:

Moldy or rotten food

Feeding pigs moldy and rotting food will endanger their health, leading to death in extreme cases.

Fresh meat and eggs

Although meat and eggs are highly proteinous, feeding your pigs with raw meat and eggs constantly can lead to foot and mouth disease. Ensure the meat and eggs are cooked first before serving them to them

High salt and sugar content food

Avoid foods that contain too much salt or sugar. For example, fruits are rich in sugar. Although beneficial to pigs, it can still be harmful when served in large quantities.

What Food Are Best For Pigs To Feed On?

Rather than giving the pig dog food, you can try out the following diets.  

Cooked Leftovers

Pigs aren’t selective in terms of feeding. You can efficiently serve them leftovers of cooked meats, chicken, or grains. Apart from being cost-effective, they are healthy for the pigs.


Pigs love to forage, both dry and fresh. You can allow them to roam about and feed on the grasses or feed them with fresh vegetables. They can eat any time of vegetable you can find in the market. Also, you can add fruits like bananas or grapes to the diet.

Pig Pellets

Like dog food, pig pellets are fed specially designed to meet the nutritional needs of the pigs, depending on their age and species.

These types of feed contain the needed nutrients; the only limitation is that they can be expensive. And not all pig owners can afford to feed their pigs with pig pellets.


You should note that dog food and pig pellets are different foods designed for two different animals and shouldn’t be exchanged for each other.

Never serve dog food to the pigs; it should be done only during emergencies.

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